Doctor Strange #2 Review

Writer: Jed MacKay

Artist: Pasqual Ferry

Colorist: Matt Hollingsworth

Cover Artist: Alex Ross

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Reviewer: StoryBabbler

Doctor Stephen Strange is back from the dead and is the Sorcerer Supreme once again. He had a lot of catching up to do with his friends, allies, frenemies, and now his old enemies. But he’s not alone, as his wife Clea, niece of Dormammu and Sorcerer Supreme of the Dark Dimension, is also by his side. However, new dangers are emerging as they stumble upon what seems like the same old same old with Nightmare, but find out there’s more going on. See what new perils await the Sorcerer Supreme in Doctor Strange #2.

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So, Stephen Strange and Clea are on the case when Moon Knight of all people calls them up to help a poor little girl whose soul seems to have been taken. Their first suspect is none other than the Lord of Fear, Nightmare, a classic old foe of Dr. Strange. Of course, as the comic reveals, this isn’t Nightmare’s handiwork, and neither is he behind anything that’s going on. Fair warning, there will be slight SPOILERS from the comic throughout this review.

For this comic, Clea takes the helm as her narration guides readers throughout this comic’s story. Readers will get her opinion on things as the plot unfolds and they journey through Nightmare’s realm. Granted, her narration doesn’t really provide any unique insight to what’s unfolding in the story, it’s mainly just giving her perspective on things. If you’ve read Jed MacKay’s Strange miniseries where Clea is the Sorcerer Supreme while Stephen is dead, then you get more of the same here. She’s aggressive, confrontational, looking for a fight to distract from her fears, feels like there’s a world of difference between her and her husband. But despite all of that, she’s capable and is confident in her efforts and Stephen Strange to save the child’s soul.


The art by Pasqual Ferry is good on its own and continues to be good here when it comes to depicting the fantastical elements. However, it falters when the story changes locations to Nightmare’s realm of dreams. There’s plenty of good absurd and macabre imagery in the landscape and creatures of Nightmare’s domain, but some things just don’t pop as much as they should. This dichotomy of things looking good at one point but then not so afterward is prevalent in the comic. For example, we get a neat confrontation between Stephen and Clea with some natives of Nightmare’s realm, and they have some solid designs, but they’re not visually good in action.

Not to mention that when Dr. Strange and Clea finally locate Nightmare, he’s been bound and tortured by some unknown assailant. The thing is, it’s not really that bad. Or rather, Nightmare has endured far worse than this in past stories including some Dr. Strange stories, so the weight of his tortured state doesn’t really have the impact it should visually or in his dialogue. Speaking of Nightmare, Marvel writers just cannot give him a break. Honestly, first Gerry Duggan brings Nightmare into his X-Men run just so he can get humiliated by Jean Grey twice. And now Jed MacKay brings him in just to be tortured off-panel by another villain. Marvel Comics has defanged Nightmare so much in the past decade that this just feels like more of the same. Hopefully now that Wong’s story is converging with Dr. Strange’s, the story can move in an interesting direction.

Final Thoughts:

Dr. Strange #2 brings Stephen Strange and Clea into conflict with Stephen’s old foe, Nightmare. But things are not as they seem. The story and writing is good and everyone is consistent with their characters, at least how Jed MacKay writes them. And while it’s underwhelming to see Nightmare diminished once again as a villain, the story and the art made up for it in some ways. By the end, Stephen and Clea’s story converges with Wong’s from the first issue and set things up for the next issue.


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